...But... What is Baetong Chicken Rice? I've heard of Hainanese Chicken Rice, which is where chicken rice originated, but Baetong?
Baetong is actually a district in Yala, Southern Thailand. It's also the name of a species of chicken that was brought over to Thailand when the Chinese immigrated to Baetong District over 100 years ago.
Baetong species of chicken, I've read, have a soft-chewy texture and crispy skin with less fat than the species that are normally used.
To add to the confusion, "Baetong" here is also the name of the eatery, as well as the name of the dish served, and the name of the species of chicken used!
So, Baetong (as in the name of the shop)'s Baetong chicken rice, is, as mentioned earlier, is great. The rice is perfectly cooked and fluffy. The chicken is plump and juicy. The soup has a soft, slightly sweet, mild flavour - a perfect compliment to the dish. The sauces are wonderful. I love, particularly, the sauce on the left hand side (see photo below). Both sauces have ginger and chilli, but the sauce on the left also has dao jiew (bean paste), which adds another dimension to the complexity of flavours. It's perfect on the chicken and rice.
As with other chicken rice restaurant, we can also choose fried chicken instead of steamed chicken. I'm more of a traditionalist and don't tend to order the fried chicken - chicken rice, but apparently, it's very good as well.
If you can't decide which one to go for, you can always ask for half steamed chicken and half fried chicken. I think I'll do that next time just to see what the fried chicken is like. There are other combinations available too - e.g. steamed chicken with innards; steamed chicken, fried chicken and crispy skin pork on chicken rice..... Boat noodle is also served here.
Price: from around 40 baht.
Baetong Chicken Rice Shop
Location: Mae Jo-Phrao Rd
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